According to the data from the Environmental Protection Agency, there are 250 companies in Serbia actively engaged in recycling while the line ministry has issued 600 waste management permits so far.
The President of the Serbian Recyclers’ Association, Kristina Cvejanov says that there are enough waste recycling factories but not enough raw materials, i.e. the waste, which these factories need to operate. The majority of them are already working at half capacity.
“Our facilities are working at a 50% capacity and huge quantities of waste that are collected by utility companies usually end up on landfills while our recyclers are having trouble to provide raw materials. That’s why waste collection is the weakest link in the recycling chain”, Cvejanov claims.
She adds that over 2,000 formal waste collection permits have been issued in Serbia so far while it is impossible to ascertain how many informal or street waste collectors are there.
At the same time, Serbia recycles 40% of packaging waste and, in this aspect, is close to the European average which stands at 50% – she says. “However, we are lagging behind in recycling glass and tins”, Cvejanov adds.
Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, Filip Radović says that the new Environmental Protection Law stipulates setting up a fund in 2017 which will dispose of the money collected from the environmental tax. The purpose of the fund is to financially help companies that are participating in various aspects of green economy.
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